REFLECTIONS BY...

Victor Ogbuneke, UNEP – SCBD, Administrative Officer

Towards the end of 1998 several months following the end of my official internship, I received a call from the Youth Unit that the planned host of the Second International Children’s Conference on Environment had withdrawn its offer and since invitations had already been sent out, something needed to be done to salvage and to maintain the momentum following the successful First International Children’s Conference on Environment which was held in 1995 in Eastbourne, England.

I responded that UNEP could pull this off and host it in Nairobi and that we maintain the original date but change the venue to Nairobi, Kenya. We had barely less than 62 days left to make this happen and have over 600 sponsored participants to attend this event.

A meeting with Tore Brevik, then Director of Division of CPI, was held and he looked at me and responded, “if this young man has confidence in us to make this happen within this short time, then we can make it happen”.

The rest is history as UNEP wonderfully engaged all hands and delivered an outstanding 1998 Second International Children’s Conference on Environment with the participation of over 1,000 children from around the world. UNEP continues to inspire the world through the eyes of Children to make the world a better place, as children’s conferences on the environment have, and are still held, to this day.

I am humbled to be part of this great institution, UNEP, and have a firm commitment and resolve to continue striving in making a positive contribution towards the great work of this organization in every opportunity.

Finally, the importance given by UNEP to Children and Youth is phenomenal!!! This is a foundation for championing environmental responsibility by all walks of life and I commend UNEP for this steadfastness.

Happy 40th Anniversary!!